The Buachaille Etive Mor, Stob Dearg. Pools of blue ice refelecting the sky, everything steeped and sunken against this east wind. Serpentine roots of heather curl round smoothed boulders of granite, skelped lichen crusting. Sun shadows as the sky quickly darkens, rain clouds gather. Drawing lines and shapes of moor and rock. Downhill I follow a burn, only a hands width as it travels, carving small canyons in the peat. Here the water falters, slows then drops, cascades, ox bow bends, divides and splits again, smaller and narrower bronchioles over the moss sponge lungs of the mountain. Looking back, snow catches on high ledges, drifts in gullies, zig-zagging. A golden eagle swoons the southern flank, a herd of red deer watch as I scratch a likeness of sorts.
Daffodils flowering in the verge. A thrush sings for me from a hawthorn, it would fill anyone’s heart. The sky is full of birdsong this morning and a woodpecker thrums in the wood. I meet a walker and we stop for a chat, share stories of ourselves. I am told to pop in any time I am passing. Swans on the loch, a ploughed field. The softest blue sky and a warm sun.
Rock, water, fissure.
Snow water trickles, pools, slips down in search of more level ground. Two climbers in red jackets belay, traverse, make a pitch for the summit. A pair of golden eagles circle still higher, watch the movements below.